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Tue Feb 19, 2013, 04:47 PM

ughh--caught a couple of minutes of cnn today--the passengers on that carnival cruise from hell

apparently have NO legal recourse, no legal basis on which to sue carnival. is this accurate? one of the people read part of the contract people apparently sign, which basically seems to say that carnival has no liability, because people sign away all their rights when they sign that contract.

it was pointed out that carnival has made very sure that whatever laws there are don't really apply to them.

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Reply ughh--caught a couple of minutes of cnn today--the passengers on that carnival cruise from hell (Original post)
niyad Feb 2013 OP
Angry Dragon Feb 2013 #1
customerserviceguy Feb 2013 #13
davidn3600 Feb 2013 #19
Arugula Latte Feb 2013 #2
unblock Feb 2013 #3
KamaAina Feb 2013 #4
customerserviceguy Feb 2013 #12
KamaAina Feb 2013 #14
customerserviceguy Feb 2013 #17
immoderate Feb 2013 #5
Posteritatis Feb 2013 #7
WilliamPitt Feb 2013 #6
PatSeg Feb 2013 #8
zipplewrath Feb 2013 #9
jberryhill Feb 2013 #11
jberryhill Feb 2013 #10
customerserviceguy Feb 2013 #15
jberryhill Feb 2013 #20
Cleita Feb 2013 #16
lynne Feb 2013 #18

Response to niyad (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 04:50 PM

1. I guess that might be a good reason for everyone to stop using them

and see how that works for Carnival

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Response to Angry Dragon (Reply #1)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 06:52 PM

13. Yes

At this point, if you sign up for a Carnival cruise, you are no longer entitled to have anyone feel sorry for you, no matter what happens on that vessel.

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Response to Angry Dragon (Reply #1)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:32 PM

19. I think most cruise lines have this language in the contracts

But most cruise lines dont have these kinds of problems. The competition is quite fierce in the cruise industry. However, Carnival is so large that these incidents dont make any crippling blow to the company as it would on smaller lines. Carnival has typically pretty cheap prices compared to the competition. So that's what really keeps people coming, especially in a down economy. In some cases, a cruise on Carnival is half the price as anyone else.

The thing is though that when you go cheaper than everyone else, you are usually sacrificing something. And it's obvious Carnival is cutting corners in a lot of places to save money. You get what you pay for. They are a budget line.

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Response to niyad (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 04:51 PM

2. I'll bet a lot of people on that ship are older, anti-government, pro-"tort reform" types.

Yeah, yeah, not all, but many, I'm sure.

Let's see how that works for them.

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Response to niyad (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 04:52 PM

3. sounds right, i remember something like that from when i took a cruise.

that doesn't mean it's 100% legally enforceable, though.

vendors often put things in contracts that they think or even know for sure are unenforceable. they do this to talk people out of suing in the first place, and making it more expensive and difficult for them to do so if they try.

as a practical matter, it probably all depends on if they were negligent in maintaining the equipment. it is was all a completely innocent accident, then yeah, customers probably don't have any real recourse.

for what it's worth, i heard they refunded tickets and gave them discounts for future cruises (for those who dare try their luck again)....

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Response to niyad (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 04:52 PM

4. It doesn't help that all their ships are foreign-flagged

The Good Ship Lollipoop, for instance, is under Bahamian registry.

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Response to KamaAina (Reply #4)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 06:51 PM

12. "Good Ship Lollipoop"

Gawd, that was funny!

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Response to customerserviceguy (Reply #12)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 06:53 PM

14. Not original, I'm afraid

yoinked it off someone's FB post.

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Response to KamaAina (Reply #14)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 06:57 PM

17. Recycled humor is still great

A joke is a terrible thing to waste.

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Response to niyad (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 04:55 PM

5. Speaking with the legal authority of any average TV viewer...

My impression is that contracts can't supersede state laws, and that you can't sign away (all) your rights. In short, they can sue.

I look forward to being corrected, if necessary.

--imm

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Response to immoderate (Reply #5)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 05:04 PM

7. The cruise line isn't bound by US law. (nt)

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Response to niyad (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 05:02 PM

6. Force majeure



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Response to niyad (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 05:09 PM

8. I saw a really good piece on cruises

and the ridiculous contracts they make passengers sign. I wish I could remember where I saw it, but it was insane what these companies get away with.

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Response to niyad (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 05:12 PM

9. Extremely complicated

Where did they buy their ticket, from whom? Did they buy from a reseller such that Carnival isn't liable to US law, but from the country in which Carnival sold the ticket? Is the contract valid if they are negligent? Do they have to have knowingly sailed with a vessel that was deficient or will "should have known" allow suits to go forward.

At the end of the day you don't go into these suits to end up in court. You go in to get a better settlement than they are offering. It's basically negotiation.

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Response to zipplewrath (Reply #9)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 06:15 PM

11. Consider the extent of cognizable injury


As you have a clue on various jurisdictional arguments, step back and consider what cognizable injuries could be claimed....

Lost wages for being late back? That's a normal waived liability in any sort of carriage contract, and routinely upheld. If consequential damages for not adhering to a schedule were non-waivable, no airline or passenger line would exist.

Non-infectious illness from having to smell sewage? Claiming nausea as an injury on a ship? Ummm... just being ON the ship makes a statistically certain number of folks sick.

Emotional injury? How many people are going to spend the psych couch time to get a diagnosis for proceeding?

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Response to niyad (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 06:10 PM

10. I am jberryhill's complete lack of surprise


Carnival has been held immune from suit for crew members raping passengers (with the exception of one case where they made a procedural error in asserting a defense).

They have had entire ships come down with norovirus. People have been seriously injured and maimed participating in activities.

While being late back, not having good food, and having to smell sewage are all certainly no great shakes, Carnival has a long history of being held immune from suit for much more profound passenger injuries than anything suffered by anyone aboard the Triumph.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #10)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 06:56 PM

15. You've made me reconsider the idea of taking a cruise

Even on a "good" line. You are simply 100% subject to whatever indignities and injuries befall you, with no recourse of any kind, even being able to walk away.

I had thought about taking an Alaska cruise someday, even flying JetBlue ends in a matter of hours rather than days.

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Response to customerserviceguy (Reply #15)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 01:05 PM

20. Meh...


If one listened to lawyers, one would never get out of bed in the morning and do anything.

The point is - can horrendous things happen if you do X? Yes.

If there was utterly no legal recourse available for anything that could happen to you on a cruise, is it worth taking? Well, millions of people do it every year and have a great time. In the larger scheme of things, the passengers of the Triumph are just a drop in the statistical ocean.

What are the odds you will have (a) a spectacular Alaska cruise, or (b) the most horrific experience of your life. The odds favor (a) over (b) and there comes a point where you just have to decide for yourself whether the reward outweighs the risk.

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Response to niyad (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 06:56 PM

16. Maybe. Maybe not. It depends on which country the ship is registered to.

It was explained to me some years ago that when you are on board a ship and are in international waters, the ship operates under the laws of the country of registry. For instance, if there is a murder, the murderer would in theory be tried according to the laws of that country. So maybe if the passengers try a lawsuit in the courts of the country of registry, maybe that contract could be null and void. Now I know I'm making a stretch here and it would take international lawyers to figure this out, but it could be that not all is lost yet to those passengers.

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Response to niyad (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:13 PM

18. Have cruised with three different lines -

- and the contracts are all very similar. Basically, you have no recourse over this type situation where there was a mechanical malfunction. You have no recourse over "Act of God" stuff - weather, rogue waves, etc.

Now - no matter what you signed - if it can be found that the situation occurred due to negligence of the line, crew, etc., - and it involved bodily injury or death - I'd think a decent attorney would have something to work with. While these people had a horrible time, they did all arrive home in one piece.

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